Author: Gidon Ariel

Published Date: July 19, 2017


Sharon asked:

You make it clear, at the end of this lesson, that “there is always a way back.”
What does Judaism teach about the after-Eden lifestyle, accomplishments, ‘start-up’ of Adam and Chavah? If the Hebrew “shuv-I” can be defined as “to come back home,” did they accomplish that goal? Is “repentance” a part of that goal, and what does Judaism teach about Chavah and Adam, with regard to repentance? Job 34:11 and other references say G-d rewards to each according to their works: in Judaism, how is that integrated into “coming back”? I really hunger to know more about Eternal rewards of The Almighty, the age-to-come and how to invest in it!

Rabbi Gedalia Meyer answered:

Judaism says very little about Adam and Chava’s life after their exile from the Garden. They certainly never came back there but that doesn’t mean they didn’t begin the journey back. There is a midrash (rabbinic teaching from outside the Talmud) that says that Adam and Cain met up after Cain was exiled following his murder of Abel. They were in the same place (east of Eden). Adam asked Cain what happened to him with his judgment. Cain answered that he had repented and he received a lighter judgment. Adam rebuked himself for not knowing the power of repentance. Apparently he didn’t realize that repentance can mitigate any punishment. The midrash the says that a certain chapter of Psalms that hints to repentance was actually written by Adam as a result of this revelation. I hope this answer at least some of your many questions.


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